Toronto teacher to stand trial in drowning of student on trip to Algonquin park


TORONTO — A teacher charged in the death of a Toronto high school student who drowned on a field trip two years ago has been ordered to stand trial.

Nicholas Mills is charged with criminal negligence causing the death of 15-year-old Jeremiah Perry in July 2017.

Perry was on a trip to Algonquin Provincial Park with other students from C.W. Jefferys Collegiate Institute when he went for a swim and vanished underwater.

A police dive team found the boy’s body the next day.

The Toronto District School Board placed Mills on home assignment a few days later, and he was arrested in July 2018.

Mills’s lawyer says he believes in his client and has confidence in the Toronto jury that will eventually hear the case.

“I expect that they will see this case as a matter of tragedy rather than criminality,” Philip Campbell said outside court after a preliminary hearing Thursday. “We look forward to the day it’s over.”

Details of the hearing are covered under a standard publication ban.

After Perry died, the Ontario Provincial Police conducted an extensive investigation, with detectives interviewing more than 100 witnesses.

The Toronto District School Board said Perry and 14 other students among the 32 on the trip had failed a mandatory swim test.

Perry’s family was not in court on Thursday.

Mills is scheduled to next appear in court on Jan. 9.


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